Catholic officials are speaking out against “Saturday Night Live” following a “Weekend Update” sketch featuring Pete Davidson. During the sketch comedy show’s Idris Elba-hosted episode on March 9, Davidson made a joke comparing alleged sex abuse within the Catholic Church to R. Kelly’s long history of sexual abuse allegations.
“This guy is a monster and he should go to jail forever,” Davidson said about Kelly during “Weekend Update.” “But if you support the Catholic church, isn’t that, like, the same thing as being an R. Kelly fan? I don’t really see the difference, except for one’s music is significantly better.”
Catholic leaders in Brooklyn are demanding an apology from “Saturday Night Live” in regards to Davidson’s now-controversial joke. The Diocese of Brooklyn released a statement online (via Deadline) calling Davidson’s moment “disgraceful” and the segment as a whole an “offensive skit.”
“Apparently, the only acceptable bias these days is against the Catholic Church,” the statement reads. “The faithful of our Church are disgusted by the harassment by those in news and entertainment, and this sketch offends millions…The clergy sex abuse crisis is shameful, and no one should ever get a laugh at the expense of the victims who have suffered irreparably. The Diocese of Brooklyn strives every day to ensure that sexual abuse by clergy never happens again.”
The statement concluded by saying, “The Diocese of Brooklyn is demanding an immediate public apology from ‘Saturday Night Live’ and NBC.”
Davidson has often found himself at the center of backlash for his appearances on “Weekend Update.” The comedian made national headlines last November after making a joke about the appearance of Dan Crenshaw, a former Navy SEAL who wears an eyepatch after losing his right eye in an IED blast in 2012. IndieWire has reached out to NBC for further comment.
Watch Davidson’s most recent “Weekend Update” appearance in the video below.